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Opening Ceremony Highlights

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Third Session of the Ninth Parliament
President Ranil Wickremesinghe arrives at the Parliamentary Complex. Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena is also in the picture.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe ceremonially declared open the third session of the Ninth Parliament yesterday morning.

On his arrival at the Parliament, President Wickremesinghe and the First Lady were received by the Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena and the Secretary General of Parliament, Dhammika Dassanayake.

In accordance with the instructions of the President, arrangements were made to conduct the ceremony in a very simple manner without gun salutes or car parades.

Instead, the President was received in front of Parliament with a Tri-Force Guard of Honour. There was no President’s flag being hoisted , only the National Flag was hoisted.

The arrival of the Members of Parliament took place prior to the arrival of the President, followed by the arrival of Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena, Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena and finally President Ranil Wickremesinghe. Following the ceremonial opening at 10 a.m. the President presented the government’s policy statement at 10:30 a.m. in accordance with powers vested in him through Article 33 of the Constitution.

After entering the Chamber, the President presided over the sittings and the President’s seat was marked with the State Emblem instead of the President’s official emblem. During the President’s ‘Throne Speech’, the speaker sat with the secretaries in the lower seat, where the speaker sits during the committee stage.

In his speech the President Wickremesinghe said he is the President of all Sri Lankans and assured to protect the rights of all segments of the society.

President Wickremesinghe also reiterated his request to all political parties and groups to support the establishment of an all-party government to solve the issues faced by the people. He also asserted that while he accepts the right to engage in peaceful protests according to the law of the country, he will not allow any harm come to the peaceful protesters. However, he said he would take stern action against those, who purposely violate the law and perpetrate violence.

Following the presentation of the Government Policy Statement by the President, the House was adjourned until August 9.

The ceremonial opening was followed by a tea party organized for the Members of Parliament and invited guests.

A Guard of Honour was also presented, when the President and First Lady left the Parliament.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe arrives at the Parliamentary Complex. Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena is  also in the picture.

Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardene arrives in Parliament .          |   The President meets religious dignitaries.

                                            Foreign delegates                                                           |   President with Parliamentarian Premanath C. Dolawatte.

Parliamentarian Kavinda Jayawardena greets the President. Former Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa was also present. 

The President in conversation with Parliamentarian Shanakiyan Rasamanickam. Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa was also present. 

SJB Parliamentarian Mujibur  Rahman greets the President .

Defence Secretary,  Chief of Defence Staff,  Service Chiefs and  the IGP 

Pictures by Hirantha Gunathilaka

Thursday, August 4, 2022 – 01:00

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